Monday, November 24, 2008

Weekend wrestling

Friday night we babysat for our good friends. Conner and Colby are about 18 months apart in age and have been friends since Colby was a newborn. Lily and Chloe are only about 5 months apart and are already showing signs of becoming friends. The boys, like usual, got pretty hyper. (What little boys don't?) So to get out some of their energy, Curt got them into a pretty hard-core wrestling match. It went on for forever. Not wanting to be left out, little Lily had to get in on the action too.

This is what Chloe and I did...

Saturday was a much more calm day. We had our usual pancakes for breakfast, then went to work on cleaning the garage (again). Afterwards I gave the dog a haircut. Here is Colby in a random pic. Notice Daisy on the floor behind him.

That is what she did for hours after she got her new 'do.

Then Saturday night we rented a movie and roasted brats in the fireplace.

Colby had a breakthrough on Sunday evening. He and Curt were playing in the basement (don't even ask why the guest bed is in the middle of floor), and Colby finally learned to jump! For some reason that has been hard for him. He thought he could jump, but one foot always stayed on the ground. Now I can't get him to stop jumping! Check out the concentration...

Blast off!

This morning I went in to get Chloe when she woke up only to find her pulling up on the side rail with her head hanging over the edge. Obviously it was time to lower the mattress. As some of you know, I got ambitious and made all of the bedding and window treatments and all things fabric for her room. While I was wrestling with the crib I remembered how much I love the way everything turned out. So here is a little tribute to Chloe's room.

It looks like she is posing so sweetly for this picture...

But don't let her smile fool you, immediately after this, she started body-slamming her doll on the floor.

This awesome wall hanging was made by my good friend Jessica.

Colby's typical "don't take my picture" mood.

Unless something super exciting and fabulous happens on Tuesday, this will be my last post until next Monday. We are leaving Wednesday morning for Indiana to be with our families for Thanksgiving. I hope you all have a wonderful holiday!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Turkeys and Troubles

Seeing as how Thanksgiving is only a week away, I decided it was time for Colby and I to do a new project...turkey style.

The first step was to tear the construction paper into pieces to make the grass, sky and clouds. Of course Colby enjoyed that, but it was actually a little harder for him than I expected.

Next, we glued the torn up paper onto the appropriate sections of our "canvas." Here is were I get cheap, or maybe thrifty sounds better. Of course I am not going to use a real canvas for our projects. Instead, I take our empty diaper boxes and break them down and cut them to the size I want. They make for a sturdy surface for our projects, but are also very light weight which makes them possible to hang on the wall with just a little masking tape. Cheap and convenient.

Colby always wants to use my scissors whenever I am cutting anything, so I decided to let him try today. We cut out the yellow sun. Notice the look of concentration. Not an easy task for a 2 year old.

To make the turkeys, I simply painted his palm and thumb with brown paint. Then I painted his fingers in feather colors. Once his hand was goopy with paint, he simply pressed it onto the paper to make a hand print turkey. This, obviously, was the most important part of the project...and it almost didn't happen. He freaked out when I told him that I was going to put paint on his hand instead of the paper. "That's too yucky!!!" I finally convinced him it would be fun by demonstrating on myself and pointing out the fact that the brown paint looked like chocolate.

Once we got going with the hand painting he really loved it. After the paint dried, I went back in with markers and drew little feet, beaks and waddles.

Even though this project took us a long time, he wasn't ready to stop creating. So I turned over the paint brush to him.

Then he insisted he NEEDED to color with the markers. (Something he normally doesn't get to do.)

Then Chloe woke up and project time ended.

So that concludes the turkey part of this post. Now for the trouble portion...

The kids and I were down in the basement playing and checking email. Chloe was on my lap and getting sleepy. When that happens she starts throwing herself around and wrestling and basically doing anything she can to keep herself awake. Well, she had thrown herself backwards and when she sat back up she somehow caught the corner of my laptop with her forehead. It didn't seem like she had hit it that hard, so I couldn't figure out why she was crying so much. A minute later I noticed the nice little lump forming and glowing red on her forehead. So we headed to the kitchen for some ice.

Then tonight we were in Colby's room plugging in a space heater. We wanted to show it to him because it glows and we didn't want him to be scared of it if he woke up in the middle of the night. Well we turned it on, he turned out the light and then immediately tripped over Curt's foot. He broke his fall with his face on the end of the bed frame. We knew it was bad before we even got the lights back on. So we headed to the kitchen for some ice.

So that was our day on Thursday, turkeys and troubles.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Movin' and a-groovin'

My little sweetness (and laundry helper extraordinaire) decided yesterday that it was time to crawl. It is still sort of an army-type crawl, but moving in the forward direction nonetheless. And let me tell you, she is quick. Just put the remote on the floor and before you can blink she has army crawled across the room to grab it. Hooray for small milestones!

Monday, November 17, 2008

It's good to be a family

Lately we have been able to enjoy a lot of great family time. Nothing fancy, extravagant or super exciting. Just good old family time at home. After the last several months of Curt having a horribly hectic work and school schedule, we are really grateful for the time we have had together lately. We had a wonderful weekend doing nothing but hanging out at home.

Curt and Colby building a tower to the ceiling:

Chloe trying to do her part:

Couch time with Daddy:

Our traditional Saturday morning pancakes (with a twist):

Helping Daddy bring in firewood for more fires to snuggle by:

Games of Yahtzee and marbles were played and movies were watched by the fire. The garage cleaning project got underway. And of course there was plenty of general playing, laughing and snuggling with my babies.

Even tonight Curt was able to come home from work earlier than usual.

Reading with Daddy:

Wrestling match:

Snuggle time with Mommy after an orange-colored dinner:

Poor Daisy. She was just too wound up and kept clobbering the kids. She spent the most fun part of the evening on the top step. (She was able to join us later when she calmed down.)

Then it was time for haircuts for my boys and bedtime for the kiddos. Here's hoping that you all get to enjoy time doing the simple things with your family, especially as we are approaching this busy holiday season. Have a happy family!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Snow, Snow, Snow, Snow, Snow...

No, it isn't snowing and I am not obsessing over the cold white stuff. I am singing the song "Snow" from Irving Berlin's White Christmas!

I am a firm believer that the Christmas season does not begin until Friday after Thanksgiving. That is not because I am a scrooge. In fact, those few weeks between turkey day and Christmas morning are my absolute favorite time of the year!!!! I love the sights, the sounds, the activities and most of all the anticipation and the time spent with loved ones. There is just something so magical about it all.

So why am I going on and on about my favorite holiday when I am so strict about not starting the season yet...I bought "White Christmas" tonight! It is my favorite holiday movie by a long shot. The music is best, but so are the costumes and the cheesy dance routines (Choreography? please.) Anyway, I just love it all. I searched high and low last year and could not find the movie in any stores. Well tonight I just happened to see the new holiday movie display at Walmart and they had it! I wouldn't have bought this early, but they only had a couple of copies left. Apparently it is not just my favorite.

So now I am trying to wait patiently for Thanksgiving to come and go and I can forge full force into the most wonderful time of the year!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Monkey Madness

May I introduce...Monty and Molly Monkey!

Many of you have already met Molly. I made her for Chloe quite a while ago. She has been quite lonely ever since. Just sitting on a shelf in Chloe's room. Poor thing. She really needed some companionship.

Ever since making Molly, I have been planning on making a brother monkey for Colby. Well, after starting and stopping and procrastinating some more, Monty Monkey has finally joined the family.

The pattern for these totally adorable monkeys comes from my friend, Larissa. She has an awesome artsy-crafty blog and she has generously added several free patterns and cards for downloading. Her stuff is so awesome!!! She has also recently opened an Etsy shop and is selling patterns for Katy Kitty, Molly's long lost sister. As a cherry on top of all of this cuteness, Larissa has added a double-breasted winter coat for Katy (which also fits Molly). There are no limits to her craftiness.

I am pretty pleased with the way Monty turned out. I had a little bit of a hard time making his shorts and shoes and hat. I have never sewed a stitch of clothing before and had no idea how to go about designing shorts or making a hat with a bill. I obviously made a ton of mistakes, but I learned a lot that I can use if I ever make monkey shorts again.

For now I am just happy to have a finished pair of monkeys for my little monkeys.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Giddy up pony...

This past weekend was another great family weekend. Curt's parents were able to come over for a visit, which is always enjoyable. Nana and Poppy arrived Friday evening, just in time for pizza. Their arrival is always exciting. However, our dog, Daisy, is always so excited about their dog, Molly, being at our house that things can get a little crazy. If you know Daisy, you know what I mean.

Colby got a fun surprise when the grandparents arrived...a pony! Okay, so not a real pony, but the closest thing that our house can accommodate. It was supposed to be his birthday present (back in June) but we could never seem to work out a way to get to our house. So Chestnut arrived Friday night. The stand had to be assembled, and Colby was more than willing to "help" Poppy put it together.

At some point he decided that he needed to wear a helmet while riding his new pony. Safety first...

He quickly realized that it was easier and more fun to ditch to the helmet.

Chloe wasn't so into the pony, but she did enjoy some snuggle time with Daddy.

Her special treat for the day was eating Daddy's ice cream. Don't let the look on her face fool you, she loved it!

Saturday was a much calmer day, spent relaxing at home with the family and playing with grandparents. (Well, that's what everyone else did. I was out in 30 degree, windy weather trying to find a winter coat for Chloe.)

Saturday evening Curt grilled pork chops for us, YUM! Then he built a fire in the family room in the basement. We shut off all the lights and rented "Kung Fu Panda." We love fireplace season! It was such a fun family movie night. You should have seen Colby twirling and kicking and running around the basement yelling "Hi Yah!" We were laughing so hard we were practically in tears.

Sunday morning was spent at church and eating roast for lunch. Again, Yum! Unfortunately it was then time for Nana and Poppy to go home. We were all disappointed, but thankful that they were able to come.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Autumn Art

Today I decided it was time for Colby and I to do another "project." He had so much fun last time with the leaf project that I really wanted to do something else with him. A while back I came across this "How to Paint Fall Trees" project from That Artist Woman. I thought it looked like a perfect idea for Colby and I to do together.

As most of you know, I started college as an art major. Even though that was more years ago than I care to think about, I still had some paints, including water colors, hanging around my art supply tackle box. So we busted out the paints, brushes and straws and got to work. Colby LOVED painting with the big brush!

Hey, Mommy! Look at this!

Ladies, eat your hearts out! Just look at those long, dark eyelashes (not to mention those gorgeous baby blues) and that adorable little paint-splattered nose. Heartbreaker...

After painting the entire background of the picture with various fall colors, it was time to "paint" the tree. This was done by dipping a straw into watered down black paint and blowing the paint onto the paper. Super fun!

Unfortunately, I didn't go back to re-read the directions before we started, so it didn't really work out all that great. I was impatient and didn't let the background paint dry completely before trying to paint the trees. After helping Colby do his, I tried my hand (mouth) at straw painting. It was definitely harder than I had thought it would be. And I have to say that Colby did a better job painting his background. Mine turned out way too pastel. I guess the whole project would have turned out better if I had had the appropriate paper (something other than cardstock) and had followed the directions. Oh well, it was still a good time and we have something new to hang on the wall.

Next up will be some sort of Thanksgiving project. Hopefully it will be a little more successful!